Obama Targeting Journalists

According to Jeremy Scahill, the Obama administration (and President Obama directly) is running a campaign against whistleblowers and journalists (see article at RT.com).

Now it has been divulged that Obama even appealed with the president of Yemen to ensure that one of their own journalists would stay behind bars for telling the truth. Journalist Jeremy Scahill tells RT that Yemeni reporter Abdulelah Haider Shaye was instrumental in exposing the falsities of a covert war in Yemen. In December 2009, Scahill says the press reported that a Yemeni strike had killed 34 members of al-Qaeda. When Shaye went to investigate though, he soon learned through spending time on the ground that the US was actually directly involved in the attack — an attack which took the lives of civilians. Shaye was eventually put on trial for exposing the truth behind the event and allegedly the court introduced false evidence, which in the end yielded a conviction that potentially  carried a death sentence. But since the entire case against the journalist was fabricated by his government, the journalist got off with a relatively mild sentence of just five years. Under pressure, Yemeni President Saleh intended to pardon Shaye. This is when he got a call from President Obama himself, personally requesting that Saleh switch his stance on pardoning the reporter.

Is this the Obama people thought they were voting for in 2008? Chomsky says Americans should vote for Obama again in 2012 because he is “the lesser of two evils”. Perhaps. But it’s also important that they understand who they are voting for. Look behind the Hollywood-written speeches and shiny images and pay attention to what his administration actually *does*, not what it says.

Democracy Now has an excellent interview with Scahill who has just returned from Yemen.

Review: Sandberg PowerBackup for iPod + iPhone

My iPhone 4S is constantly running low on battery, especially when I’m travelling (or when I spend all day in the cigar lounge), so I’ve been on the lookout for a portable battery pack – especially since my mate Grant was here from NZ a month ago and showed me his (battery pack, that is… get your mind out of the gutter).

Then I got an email from the folks at Sandberg promoting their “PowerBackup for iPod + iPhone” 420-05 unit. They were nice enough to send me a review unit and I’ve had a few days to test it.

Out of the box it had a 75% charge on the unit but I wanted to test  it fully charged, so I plugged it into my iPhone charger for a while.  According to the Sandberg site, charging time takes 2-3 hours by AC adapter or 4-5 hours by PC. Mine fully charged on the AC adapter in about two hours.

Then I let my iPhone 4S run down to 0% and jacked the Sandberg in. After two hours, the Sandberg unit was depleted and the  iPhone was sitting at 76% charged.

While it was charging, the iPhone was powered up (in sleep mode for most of the time), NOT in airport mode and with WIFI turned ON. I figured it might charge faster with everything turned off, but if I’m using this in a real-life situation, I typically want my phone on while it’s charging.

The Sandberg has four capacity LEDs, letting you know how much charge is in it, and another LED to let you know when they iPhone is charged. It also holds its charge very well. I recharged it after the experiment, and several days later it still has a full charge.

I also tried the Sandberg on my iPad 2 but it wouldn’t charge. It’s not advertised as compatible for iPad so I wasn’t surprised, but I just wanted to test it anyway.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find them for sale in Australia yet. According to the Sandberg site, the RRP on these units is  £21.99 (about $33 AUD) but you can find them on Amazon.co.uk for less.

Definitely gets a big thumbs up from me.


No Illusions Podcast #46 – Battle For Honour And Humanity

Here’s some of the stories I talk about on this week’s show:

Why climate deniers are like the Catholic church

The Unbreakable Smartphone That Lasts For Weeks Without Recharging

What it’s like to wear a brain-stimulating “thinking cap”

Vortex radio waves could boost wireless capacity infinitely

Most asylum seeker rioters turned out to be refugees

Can the people saying “The ALP ruined the economy” now pls STFU?

Obama announces top award for Israels Peres